The fantasy RPG i daydream about

At times the thought of writing a personal fantasy role-playing game deeply rooted in my old-school knowledge wanders through my mind. It is not the first time it happens.

 In my grand dream, it would be a modular game, where you can use different sub-systems of your choice (among those available) in dealing with combat, character generation, etc...It would be a sort of mix between many old and glorious rpg's that i have come to known in my life. Totally old school, with rules never before seen.

Only God knows if i ever write this game. I am not balking at the project, maybe the right idea would be that of doing it all as a kickstarter project.

Also, the potential title perplexes me. I am not english mothertongue, so i am asking those who read a serious question (because i maintain that the title is the most important aspect of a game), how does "Sleep & Sortileges" sound to an american ear?


The Angry Monk said...

While "Sleep & Sortileges" has the alliteration of D&D and its brethren, most North Americans won't know what the word "sortileges" means, let alone being able to pronounce it. And I don't know if "Sleep" invokes a fantasy setting. Perhaps if I knew more about the setting and your vision of the world: is it high fantasy, sword & sorcery, apocalyptic future world, etc.

Personally, I would avoid the D&D alliteration. If you use it, it will only call attention to the granddaddy of RPGs rather than being its own game.

Just my 2 cents. I wish you luck on your "Grand Dream." (There's a better name right there in your post).

The Angry Monk said...

Let us know what your plans are.

Alec Semicognito said...

April Fool!

The Angry Monk said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Reading the prior comments, I don't know if this is a belated April Fool's prank or not. I'm going to assume that it is not, for now.

1). What "The Angry Monk" said. "Sleep & Sortileges" main strength is that it would be very searchable when searching for it on the Internet. Other than that, though, the name does not evoke much emotion. "Sleep" suggests being tired; Try the word "dream" instead. My understanding of the word "sortilege" is that it has something to do with magic and decisions. Therefore, maybe have a title such as "Of Dreams and Destinies"? "Dreams of Lost Kingdoms"? "Dreams of Lost Utopias"? "Memories of Forgotten Empires"?

2). The tabletop RPG industry is, to put it politely, a "mature" industry unless you introduce a game-changing product into that market (such as "Magic: The Gathering"). Beyond the vanity aspect of simply putting "your product" out there, you would need to ask yourself what you would be adding that would be unique to an already saturated marketplace. Is it a startling new setting? Is it a radical new set of gameplay mechanics? Interactivity between designers and players to form new products? A tiered-financial structure where people can download free rules but pay for quality hardcopy merchandise or "pay-to-play" where the more that fans pay, the more they directly influence future product?

3). What would attract me to purchase hardcopy RPG materials, especially modern-day hardcopy materials? That's a tough question. Here's my best guess after thinking about the question for a minute or so:

* Regular support for your product with regular updates.
* I suppose a mystical, very far-out-ish fantasy setting that was heavy on the magic/mysticism would at least pique my curiosity somewhat (no guarantee of keeping it). For instance, do you really need knights in shining armor? Do you need knights at all?
* I'm past the "I need 7,000 different kinds of dice to play the game" stage of my life. Crunchy algorithms are fun to read but not fun to play with. Keep It Simple, Silly.

At any rate, the barriers of entry for creating tabletop RPG material is very low (Have Scribus, LibreOffice & Gimp, Will Travel) so anything is possible. There's no longer any need to commit thousands of dollars up front on production, marketing and distribution. Good luck and keep us up-to-date on your progress.

The Angry Monk said...

I hope not. The post was put up on April 2nd.

Catacomb librarian said...

Yes, it was not a joke. Nonetheless, i am not sure i'll ever write it down.

Basically, the kind of fantasy role-playing game that i would like to create would be similar to what Clark Ashton Smith tried to do (but unlike me he was able to accomplish that), namely:

[...]by means of a sort of verbal black magic, in the achievement of which I make use of ... counter-point, and other stylistic resources, like a sort of incantation."

The game at that point would be like living a faery-tale.

As i wrote some time ago: "The RPG i dream of doesn't still exist on this world. It would make you cry should you play it. It would be a bizarre blend of Tolkienian sparkling faery-like poesy, melancholy, Ravenloft gloominess, all of these immersed in a convoluted system of mechanics resembling Rolemaster. Playing it should be like living one of the otherworldy fantasies of Clark Ashton Smith."

Adventurion comicstrip said...

sleep and sortileges sound like too unknown to american ears not like dungeons and dragons or sword and sorcery

check my site out!


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